Transition Towards a Sustainable Biobased Economy
Chapter 4: Techno-economic Sustainability Assessment: Methodological Approaches for Biobased Products
Published:26 Feb 2020
D. Briassoulis, A. Koutinas, J. Gołaszewski, A. Pikasi, D. Ladakis, M. Hiskakis, and M. Tsakona, in Transition Towards a Sustainable Biobased Economy, ed. P. Morone and J. H. Clark, The Royal Society of Chemistry, 2020, ch. 4, pp. 80-132.
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The term techno-economic sustainability assessment describes a methodology to assess the technical feasibility and economic sustainability of a process or a product. The methodology provides a set of sustainability principles to be fulfilled by the process or the product and develops a set of criteria and indicators to show how well these sustainability principles are fulfilled. To assess the techno-economic sustainability indicators, the process or product in question has to be optimised following system engineering and process design principles. The overall sustainability assessment of biobased products requires also the parallel environmental and social sustainability assessment. The chapter is modular, structured in three sections. In Section 1, The methodology for techno-economic sustainability assessment of resource efficiency and utilisation of renewable feedstock for the production of biobased products is presented and criteria and indicators are proposed for alternative feedstock. In Section 2, the methodology for techno-economic sustainability assessment of the conversion routes of renewable feedstock resources to biobased products is presented and criteria and indicators are proposed for alternative processing routes. In Section 3, the methodology for techno-economic sustainability assessment of the alternative End-of-Life routes for biobased products is presented and criteria and indicators are proposed for each major End-of-Life route.